AP/ANTH 2130 6.00
ANTHROPOLOGY THROUGH THE VISUAL: IMAGES OF RESISTANCE/IRRESISTIBLE IMAGES
How are images a form of communication? How do photographs, political cartoons, and visual art embody verbal interaction? In this course, students are introduced to a variety of visual forms of representation including, but not limited to films, advertisements, public art, cartoons, graphic novels, and social media, to understand how the visual conveys cultural lives and experiences. We will start with the politics of representation and authority, particularly who is made visible, who is rendered invisible, and who is occluded in visual representations. We will address anthropology’s role in othering and objectifying various groups of people. Then, we will untangle the relationship between public memory, “truth”, and “cancel culture” and the conditions that contextualize the production and defacement of national monuments and memorials. We will unpack how and why toys, movies and other visual technologies produce, and are produced by, meaning, fantasy, and desire of and for various publics. In the later section of the course, we will cover how certain groups, such as Idle No More and Black Lives Matter, are creating political interventions through social media, gaining traction as political social movements and consider the implications of these counter-narratives.
This course uses film, video, visual art, photography and social media to explore key concepts in Anthropology such as race, ethnicity, nationality, globalization, power, authority, politics, religion, gender, class, sexuality and aesthetics. We view and analyze images produced by anthropologists and others, including commercial and documentary filmmakers, photographers and artists, the processes by which such images are produced and the contexts of their production. A central question the course asks is about the extent to which visual technologies that can now look deep into our bodies as well as far out into space are changing the understanding of what it means to be human in the 21st century.
Course credit exclusions: AP/ANTH 2120 6.0 Visualizing Ourselves, Visualizing Others